By Sarah Caughron of The Sisterhood of the Training Pants
Why do dogs eat poop? I can cite numerous anecdotes from friends and family about their dogs eating diaper contents or eating poop straight from the potty. This is disgusting, and it seems to be universal. I am sure you’d agree.
I grew up in a Dr. Dolittle type of environment, and we always had a host of domestic and exotic pets. We were never without a cat or a dog in the house. It never failed that every dog lived for the moment we let our guard down, and he was able to raid the litter box. When I set out on my own, the first pet I adopted was a cat, since they are easier to care for in the graduate school lifestyle of late nights, interim neglect, and hangovers. I’d eventually add a dog, Hattie, to the mix, and I am proud to say that she has NOT ONCE shown an interest in the litter box. Again, hubris got the best of me, and it turns out that she was skipping the litter box and waiting for the moment she’d reap the ultimate fecal reward: toddler poop.
When the Drunk Toddler turned 3, we kicked potty training into high gear, and he’s done really well adjusting to life beyond the diaper. I knew that pooping in the potty was going to be more of a challenge than going pee in the potty. We’d had a really good stretch, and I had even proclaimed to all the world that the toddler was, indeed, “potty trained.” Again with the hubris.
After days of rain, we finally had a glorious day outside. Time to play. I sent the dog and toddler outside a few nanoseconds ahead of me as I gathered the infant and some toys. As I was coming down the steps, I noticed my toddler standing naked from the waist down, washing his Buzz Lightyear underwear in day-old rainwater in the seat of a chair. I certainly respect this demonstrated independence, and he’s certainly never seen me wash anything like that. Ha! “Umm…what are you doing?” I asked. “It’s okay. I just pooped,” he said. Oh, In that case… SMH.
This is one of those situations when you don’t know whether to be mad or to laugh. I chose the latter. I gathered him up, cleaned him off, and changed his clothes. I didn’t see the poop anywhere near the chair, so I assumed he didn’t actually poop but maybe just had a traumatic, ferocious shart or something.
Fast forward to bedtime, and I was closing-in on a great night of binge-watching Bravo or Naked and Afraid. The Gatekeeper brought home Chipotle, and I even had a Corona Light. With a lime! (What a treat! I never have my shit together enough to procure an actual lime.) I was just getting ready to dig in to the glory that is a sustainable bowl of delicious ingredients when I smelled it.
Where was it? I started sniffing around. I knew, without a doubt, that that variety belonged to the toddler. I’ve been nose-deep in that kid’s feces since day one. I started picking up the couch cushions, looking at shoe bottoms, searching for a rogue pair of character-themed underwear. Nothing. Then I glanced over at the dog, staring at me as if to say, “Not me.” (Well, I assumed that’s what her eyes would say. You can’t really see them.)
I grabbed her muzzle and sniffed her face. W.T.F!?! Human shit. You ate human shit?!?! I am sure on the scale of fecal taste, toddler poop would be off-the-charts, ranking in at DECADENT. Why wouldn’t she want to eat it? It’s pretty much a sweet concoction of juice, gummies, goldfish, smarties, and chicken nuggets.
After cleaning her up, that’s all I could think about, and I was convinced I could still smell it. I still managed to eat my dinner and drink my beer. I don’t get a lot of no muss, no fuss dinners, so I wasn’t going to let a shit-eater rain on my parade. No, ma’am.
These stories are humbling and funny and add to the insanity of parenthood and family life. “It” truly never ends. There is always something that needs a mom’s attention. I love that dog, poopy muzzle and all (but I hope it NEVER happens again).
This post originally appeared on The Sisterhood of the Training Pants.
ABOUT SARAH CAUGHRON
Sarah is an archaeologist/museum minion turned stay-at-home-mom living in Atlanta, Georgia. She loves coffee, bad TV, and gin, but not necessarily in that order. When she isn’t battling a never-ending pile of laundry or wrangling two spirited children, she’s writing about life’s insights and indignities at her website, the Sisterhood of the Training Pants. (For something to read, check out the blog. For something to do, check out Camp Mom.)